Hazier diplomacy

I DID not do justice to the haze last week. It is far worse, invading almost every aspect of our lives: I mentioned the effects on health, productivity, tourism, transport and education but we’ve also had cancellations of sports events... more »

Hazy policies

THE jetlag after a long-haul flight from Europe arriving in the morning is tough to remedy. The only consolation is the stunning view of KL from the aircraft window, but I had forgotten about the haze. The A380 literally shuddered... more »

Freedom to protect institutions

ALAS, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga was swiftly defeated at the semi-final stage of the French Open, resulting in two Spaniards fighting it out for the Men’s Final. After learning so much about the deposition, restoration, deposition and near-restoration of the French monarchy,... more »

The French Open

I AM in Paris at the invitation of the French Foreign Ministry as a participant of the Programme d’invitation des personnalites d’avenir to immerse myself in French institutions and culture; a far cry from previous trips here that focused on... more »

State of the Hall

THE call to abolish the Dewan Negara because it is a costly rubberstamp is not as incendiary as some people make it out to be: several democracies have unicameral parliaments. But given Malaysia’s circumstances, abolition would be overkill. Instead, the... more »

Malaysian born in Melbourne

EARLIER this week, I and five other Malaysian Muslims visited a church, gurdwara and Buddhist temple. I asked my companions if they had previously stepped into a non-Muslim place of worship, and the answer was either “Once, a long time... more »

Taximeter cabinet

THERE is no emphatic message emerging from the make-up of the cabinet, but that’s no reason to be harsh on the Prime Minister. It is emblematic in any Westminster democracy for cabinet appointments to be dominated by compromise – what... more »

Partially free and not fair

THAT is the conclusion – benchmarked against the Declaration on Criteria for Free and Fair Elections by the Inter-Parliamentary Union, of which Malaysia is a member – of the joint report by Ideas and CPPS, two of the organisations accredited... more »
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